Divorce itself is a difficult process, but dealing with the aftermath can also be a challenge. Particularly if you have children, continuing to parent with your ex-spouse can be one of the most difficult parts of your new single existence. Co-parenting can be extremely stressful, but the worst of it can be handled if you have a solid plan in place. According to Psychology Today, having an open dialogue with your ex is vital to a successful co-parenting relationship. 

Keep in mind that “open dialogue” does not necessarily mean that you and your ex need to become best friends. If you can manage a cordial relationship with your ex-spouse that is fantastic, but you do not need to be anything other than businesslike. If you keep the relationship focused on your children and your children alone you will find that co-parenting becomes much less emotional and more effective. 

It is a good idea to sit down with your ex-spouse (or communicate this over email) to establish consistent rules at both your household and your ex-spouse’s. For instance, if you are enforcing a bedtime routine at your house but your ex allows the children to stay up as late as they want, this is going to cause problems. Creating a consistent routine for your children will help provide the security your children need to thrive. 

If possible, it is also good to mutually agree on not speaking negatively about the other person in front of the children and encouraging the children to not say negative things about the other parent. Keeping both homes a neutral ground will go a long way toward a smooth co-parenting relationship and stability for your children.